45 minutes ago
Tuesday, November 23, 2010
Thursday is Thanksgiving Day in the US. A day which commemorates the first harvest feast celebrated by the earliest British Puritan settlers after their arrival in the North America. The history of the event is steeped in American iconography and mythology.
Most histories tell something of the gratitude of the British settlers towards the Native Americans, who taught the new kids what grew where, introduced them to new foods,(Calvin Trillin has written that Spaghetti Carbonara was an revered gift from the Native peoples to the Brits)and generally helped them survive their first winters in America.
Little is written about how whitey showed his gratitude, repaying his debt primarily with the wrong end of a blunderbust, and systematic genocide, but we moderns prefer to overlook these inconvenient truths, at least this week.
Each family has there own Thanksgiving dinner tradition.
Bless her bones, my mother was not a good cook. I'll give her the benefit of the doubt, and factor in how a lifetime of 3 squares/day, 4 picky eaters, a traveling husband, and general lack of interest will take its toll on anyone. It didn't keep her from facing the kitchen every day though. Thanksgiving was her day to shine.
If you have never done it, Thanksgiving dinner is not a hard meal to prepare. A bit of prior planning helps, as does a thorough knowledge of what is expected by your family. If everyone is expecting turkey, and you serve pork, regardless of how great dinner was you have set yourself up for failure.
This post kicked off in a battle of comments last week. Most T-day foods are cliches, kicked off by the makers of mini marshmallows, canned onion ring bits, or cream of soup. Real food need hardly apply.
So what family foods will show up on your table this week, and does anyone really like or eat it, or has it just always been there?